About Digital Agriculture

Digital technologies speed improvements in food systems while reducing environmental impacts. By adopting digital agriculture technologies, smallholder farmers and micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) can gain ready access to data, expertise, finance, inputs and other resources to increase productivity, quality, business management practices, incomes and resilience.

Approach

CNFA’s market-driven approach expands the adoption of affordable, sustainable and integrated digital solutions that improve agricultural efficiency and tackle complex food and market systems challenges to help meet the world’s growing demand for food. CNFA leverages its 35 years of experience in 47 countries to facilitate sustainable partnerships between public and private sector actors and to catalyze technology adoption and innovation. Our approach enables smallholders and MSMEs to improve their businesses and thereby grow incomes, employment, livelihoods and food security for all.

Solutions

  • Digital extension and advisory services: video, mobile phones and online platforms offer farmers technical advice on good agricultural practices, climate-smart applications and improved productivity.
  • Digital farm management and post-harvest handling: technologies to monitor crop productivity, weather patterns, soil temperature and moisture, water usage and pests and recommend targeted inputs and other actions to increase productivity and reduce post-harvest losses.
  • Digital traceability: technologies to track the origins, processing, movement and sale of agricultural products to support food safety, legal compliance, product quality and more transparent supply chains.
  • Digital finance and mobile money: mobile applications or online platforms for farmers and agribusinesses to save money, access financing and investments, or exchange payments securely and efficiently, enabling them to reduce risk, invest in their farms and businesses and protect their incomes.
  • Digital monitoring and evaluation: tools to collect data from the field efficiently that allow real-time analysis of program impact, enabling project managers to direct resources toward the most effective interventions.
  • Digital social and behavior change: video, mobile applications and ICT tools to incentivize farmers and their families to adopt new practices and technologies.

What We Provide

  • Solutions that are tailored and adaptable to community needs and resources. As the context changes, CNFA supports local partners, MSMEs and farmers to adapt digital solutions that mitigate challenges and seize opportunities.
  • Solutions that are affordable, accessible and appropriate for emerging economies, specifically rural or remote areas where electricity and internet may be unreliable.
  • Solutions that are scalable to reach more farmers and agribusinesses and magnify gains in productivity, efficiency and livelihoods.
  • Solutions that are inclusive of women, youth and marginalized communities to ensure that benefits are equitably distributed and reach the greatest numbers of people.

Impact by Country

Ethiopia

Ethiopia

Agricultural Growth Program – Livestock Market Development (AGP-LMD) (2012-2018) – The USAID-funded AGP-LMD project developed the Ethiopian Livestock Identification and Traceability System in partnership with the Ethiopian Ministry of Agriculture. The online database houses real-time information on animal identification, movement and traceability to ensure livestock health, quality and origins for improved meat safety, public health and food security.

Egypt

Egypt

Feed the Future Egypt Food Security and Agribusiness Support (FAS) (2015-2020) – The FAS project developed the SMS-based Digital Extension Service Platform in partnership with ICT implementer Souktel. The platform delivered production, post-harvest, marketing and nutrition-related technical advice to farmers and households. It also conveyed market information to farmers, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Georgia

Georgia

USAID Agriculture Program (2018-2023) – In Georgia, the USAID Agriculture Program supported the development of Mobile Harvest, a farmer-friendly application designed to systematize and streamline accounting and inventorying during harvest and storage. To support digital capacity building, the Program also partners with regional experts and local television personalities to host the “AgriTalk” video series. The videos, shared on Facebook, reach thousands of farmers with best practices in farm management, post-harvest handling, access to finance, business development and more. Additionally, the Program moderates WhatsApp groups that provide farmers with 24/7 access to extension agents to support their productivity.

USAID/Ferrero Georgia Hazelnut Improvement Project (G-HIP) (2015-2022) – G-HIP hosts videos on its social media platforms featuring agronomists and other experts to build the productive capacity of hazelnut producers. G-HIP also supports the Georgian Hazelnut Growers Association to host member trainings through virtual meetings, social media platforms and hazelnut Facebook auctions on behalf of producers. This enabled small and medium hazelnut producers to strengthen the quality of their hazelnuts and earn premium prices for their harvest.

Pakistan

Pakistan

USAID Pakistan Agricultural Technology Transfer Activity (PATTA) (2017-2021) – PATTA facilitates tele-demonstrations that virtually showcase agricultural technologies relevant to smallholder farming communities, especially to women farmers, and encourage agriculture technology adoption across the country. PATTA also supports provincial agriculture departments to provide remote assistance, agricultural best practices, extension services and agriculture technology recommendations using mobile technologies. Through these ICTs, PATTA reaches farmers with timely, relevant information on productivity-enhancing and time-saving agricultural technologies, increasing their earnings and improving their livelihoods.

USAID U.S. Pakistan Partnership for Agribusiness Market Development (AMD) (2015-2019) – Through grants, AMD provided equipment such as traceability software and ancillary hardware like radio-frequency identification (RFID) scanners and ear tags that enabled beef producers to develop databases for managing livestock development and exports. The databases improved feedlot management and built capacity to monitor livestock performance and meet food safety requirements, increasing earnings and access to new markets.

Rwanda

Rwanda

Feed the Future Rwanda Hinga Weze Activity (2017-2022) – Hinga Weze works to strengthen digital extension for farmers, agrodealers and extension agents and provides solutions for effective remote implementation. In 2021, Hinga Weze launched the New Extensionist Learning Kit (NELK) in partnership with the Global Forum for Rural Advisory Services (GFRAS), the Feed the Future Developing Local Extension Capacity (DLEC) and the Rwandan Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources (MINAGRI), among others, to build the capacity of agricultural extension agents. The kit contains modules for self-directed, face-to-face or blended learning for extension field staff, managers and lecturers. Hinga Weze also collaborated with an international non-profit to develop a web-based administration platform with digital training content on maize cultivation for extension agents and farmers, improving maize productivity, farmer earnings and food security.

West Africa

West Africa

USDA West Africa PRO-Cashew Project (2019-2024) – PRO-Cashew strengthens existing data and fills significant gaps in data coverage and quality through its integrated Cashew-IN platform, a regional database housing information for farmer organizations, policymakers and private sector investors to monitor global cashew supply chains and understand the national, regional and overseas cashew markets. It also monitors the cashew supply chain, supports traceability for quality control and informs evidence-based policies to increase the profitability and marketability of cashews in West Africa.

Partner With Us

To partner with CNFA to promote digital agricultural solutions, contact info@cnfa.org.